International journal of dermatology 2017 08 09() doi 10.1111/ijd.13708
Cutaneous tuberculosis (TB) is re-emerging as a significant problem in India due to increased incidence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), other immunosuppressive states/factors like drugs, and emergence of multidrug resistance (MDR-TB). Proper diagnosis is warranted as there is varied clinical presentation and similarity with many other diseases.
To assess the sensitivities of DNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR), culture, and histopathology for the diagnosis of cutaneous TB in clinically suspected skin lesions.
Clinically suspected cases of cutaneous TB were enrolled in the study. Two skin punch biopsies were taken from each patient and sent for histopathology examination and DNA PCR with culture, respectively.
Of the total 70 cases enrolled, 49 were detected as cutaneous TB by the above tests. The sensitivities of DNA PCR, culture, and histopathology were 24.5, 16.3, and 91.8%, respectively.
DNA PCR and culture should be advised in cases of cutaneous TB with inconclusive histopathology. DNA PCR should be considered in preference over culture if facilities are available as it gives rapid results and has a higher sensitivity.